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EghtesadOnline: Out of a total of 341 million cards issued by Iranian banks by the end of calendar month to July 22, card holders conducted at least one transaction with 101.2 million cards during the month.

In other words, more than 239.7 million cards, or 70% of the total, remained unused during the period.   

The number of active bank cards during this period increased 1.3% compared to a month ago, when there were 99.95 million cards with at least one transaction, IRNA reported, citing Central Bank of Iran data and Shaparak, the nationwide payment network. 

Bank customers in Tehran alone held 92.7 million bank cards. The capital has a population of about nine million, according to Financial Tribune.

Three main cards are used in Iran, namely debit card, credit card and the gift card. 

Debit cards totaled 96.8 million by the end of the said period, accounting for 95.6% of all active bank cards.

There were also close to 4.3 million gift cards accounting for 4.25% of all active bank cards.

Credit card holders were the last with 116,450 cards, or a meager 0.12% share. 

The number of active debit cards increased 1.63% compared to the previous month. There was a 42% increase in the number of credit cards. 

This is while the number of issued gift cards fell 6.1% during the month.  The cards were issued by 36 banks and credit institutions.

Iran’s largest state-owned lender, Bank Melli Iran issued 22.20% of the cards followed by Bank Mellat and Bank Saderat Iran, jointly accounting for 11.3% and 11.3% of all bank cards during the month.

It was followed by Bank Keshavarzi Iran, the main agriculture bank, with 7.4%. Bank Sepah with 6.8%, Refah Bank with 6.6%, Tejarat Bank with 6.4%, and Bank Maskan with 3.1% followed the list.

BMI issued the highest number of debit cards, followed by Bank Saderat Iran and Bank Mellat.


Highest Transactions 

Data show that BMI, Bank Mellat and Bank Saderat Iran recorded the highest number of transactions with debit cards.

Banks with the most transactions using gift cards were BMI, Parsian Bank and Bank Mellat.

The main issuers of credit cards were Bank Mellat, Bank Saderat Iran and state-owned Bank Sepah.

The highest financial turnover during the month was reported by Bank Mellat, BMI and Bank Saderat Iran.

According to the state news agency, bi-National Bank Iran-Venezuela had the lowest financial turnover. 

Established as a joint venture between Banco Industrial de Venezuela and the Export Development Bank of Iran in 2010, the bank was created to help boost commerce and investment between Iran, Venezuela and Latin America. The bank has one branch in Tehran.   

EDBI, Credit Institution for Development and the Bank of Industry and Mine were among the list of lenders with the lowest turnover. 


Iran Banks Bank Cards issued Unused card holders